To the Select Committee from Maureen C 6 October 2009


I submit that this Bill should be withdrawn, the current Emission Trading Act be repealed and the Government of New Zealand take no action in Copenhagen.
The introduction of this scheme and the previous scheme will impose costs onto the NZ economy at a time of recession with no measurable beneficial outcome.
Whether the costs are imposed on the taxpayer or onto industry emitters, the outcome will be the same. New Zealanders will pay the price for ill-conceived legislation as any increased costs incurred by producers will be passed on to consumers.
In answer to a question in Parliament by Charles Chauvel on 23 September Dr Nick Smith said that cost estimates beyond 2013 are more difficult as we do not know the final outcome of international negotiations and there is more uncertainty about the price of carbon.
I submit it is irresponsible for any Government to impose a scheme on New Zealand which is governed by unknown international negotiations, particularly when it will have such a huge impact on the lives of and livelihoods of New Zealanders and when it now appears doubtful there will be buy-in from other countries. We will therefore be at a competitive disadvantage as far as selling our goods and attracting investment into this country.
Although the whole idea of an Emissions Trading Scheme is flawed, the very worst aspect of this scheme is the inclusion of agriculture, the backbone of our economy, we will be the only country to include agriculture in an Emissions Trading scheme. This will be an added cost to our farmers and their products and whatever may be gained by apparently retaining a 'clean, green' image will be wiped out by a lessening of competitive advantage in price. There are very many countries just waiting to move into our markets.
To gain support for this Bill it appears there is also an apparent intention to include a Treaty clause in the legislation, this will once again give advantage to one sector of society and is divisive.  
Finally, there is no scientific evidence that climate change is manmade, that is not to say it is not happening, but climate has changed for thousands of years, both cooling and warming and I believe it is a natural phenomena.   CO2 is not a pollutant but is the basis of life itself. There is certainly no scientific evidence that a reduction in emissions will have any impact at all on the climate.
It is arrogant for any Government or political organisation i.e.United Nations to consider this to be so.
The IPCC review has been discredited by thousands of scientists worldwide as has the Al Gore feature film An Inconvenient Truth. The science is not settled and there is certainly no consensus in the science. In fact the only consensus appears to be political rather than scientific. This debate is being driven by an ideology rather than scientific fact and if for no other reason the Government should not impose an Emissions Trading scheme on the public of New Zealand.
For a variety of reasons this Bill does not have the support of Parliament and I contend that it would not have the support of the majority of New Zealanders had they been given all the facts based on science rather than ideology.
I reiterate this Bill should be withdrawn, the current Act repealed and no action taken at Copenhagen.